THREE FRENCH QUARTER BUSINESSMEN CHARGED WITH CONSPIRACY TO DEFRAUD THE UNITED STATES BY FILING FALSE TAX RETURNS
IBRAHIM A. MAQBOOL of Gretna, Louisiana, SAYED SAJID, of Houston, Texas, and ABDUL HAFEEZ, of Harvey, Louisiana, were charged today in a one-count bill of information with Conspiracy to Defraud the United States, announced U. S. Attorney Jim Letten.
According to the bill of information, the defendants owned multiple souvenir and t-shirt shops located in the French Quarter of New Orleans. The businesses operated under various names, including Bourbon Boutique, All That Jazz, Nawlin’s Blues, and Zydecajun. As charged in the bill of information, the defendants conspired together and with others to defraud the United States by skimming cash from their various businesses and by causing these cash receipts not to be reported to their federal income tax returns. The bill of information alleges that, as part of the conspiracy, each defendant filed at least one false federal corporate income tax return.
If convicted, IBRAHIM, SAJID, and HAFEEZ each face a maximum term of imprisonment of five years, a fine of $250,000, or both, and three years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment.
U. S. Attorney Letten reiterated that the bill of information is merely a charge and that the guilt of the defendants must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
The case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigations Division and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case is being prosecuted by Hayden Brockett, a Trial Attorney at the United States Department of Justice, Tax Division.
If you believe you have been a victim of fraud from a person or an organization soliciting relief funds on behalf of storm victims or have knowledge of waste, abuse, or allegations of mismanagement involving disaster relief operations, contact the National Center for Disaster Fraud toll free at: (866) 720-5721. You can also fax information to: (225) 334-4707 or e-mail it to: firstname.lastname@example.org